Every household should take steps to ensure safety throughout the home for the entire family, recommends Healthy Children.org.
Some steps you can take in any home include:
Install at least one smoke detector on each level of the home and check them each month to ensure that they are in good working order. Change the batteries each year, choosing a date that will be easy for you to remember. Many families change batteries in smoke detectors on New Year’s Day, when public service announcements and news broadcasts remind them to do so.
Have an escape plan ready in case of fire, hold family fire drills so each member of the family knows what to do and just as important – what not to do – like never going back into the house during a fire or fire drill under any circumstances. Leave that to the firefighters!
If you have young children in the home, it may be necessary to take steps to childproof the house to keep them safe from accidental injury.
Electrical outlets should have safety covers (ensure they are not choking hazards) on every outlet not in use to prevent little ones from exploring them with fingers or toys. Electrical cords should be stored out of sight and out of reach. You can sometimes use furniture to block access to electrical outlets and cords.
Carpeting on stairs can help minimize injury if your child falls, but child-safety gates will help prevent falls altogether.
As your child starts climbing and exploring, you can minimize access to heights by keeping stools and low pieces of furniture away from tables, counters and higher pieces of furniture. Bookshelves should be secured to the wall, and if your little one seems to be determined to scale them, try removing the bottom shelves. Windows should be locked or have safety latches that only allow them to be raised to a certain height to prevent falls.
Keep household plants, cleaning products, gardening items and medicines out of reach of your small child. Childproof locks on cabinets and closets where these items are stored provide an excellent barrier.
Be on the lookout constantly for small items that your little one may put in his mouth, and keep window blind cords attached to floor mounts or wrapped on wall brackets that are up high and out of reach of small, inquisitive hands.
Cut the loops on cords that have them and attach safety tassels that you can find in most hardware stores or any store that sells baby supplies. Keep plastic and plastic bags of all kinds out of reach of small children, and explain to your children that they should never be played with.
Bumps and Bruises
Inspect your home for sharp corners on furniture, lamps or electronics that a child can accidentally pull over, and tack down loose carpet or rugs.
Firearms and Alcohol
Firearms, if they must be kept in the home, should be stored unloaded and under lock and key, with ammunition stored separately from the firearm. Alcohol should also be kept in a locked cabinet, as it can be quite toxic to little ones.
If you have a bathtub at home or a swimming pool or wading pool in your backyard, little ones are at risk for drowning. Infants and preschool age children should be supervised at all times by an adult who is not distracted by talking, reading or doing household chores.
Make sure your children know what to do in the case of a severe storm or storm warning. If you do not have a basement or storm cellar, have a designated place in the home where the family is to meet to ride out the storm. Keep flashlights, batteries and emergency candles on hand in case of power outages.
I would hurry to a shelter from the stormy wind and storm. —Psalms 55:8